Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Lime Bars with Coconut Crust

First off, making your own coconut shreds is a real money saver, and you'll be guaranteeing a much fresher product. Just open a store bought coconut, and shred; either with a carrot grater or with a Cuisinart. I've done it both ways. I then thinly spread my coconut on a cookie sheet and dry in a warm oven. Don't cook to the point that the nut meats turn brown. This may seem like a lot of extra effort, but you sure get a lot of coconut shreds for the price of one fruit. I store in a glass jar and use in dessert recipes, top smoothies and scatter in salads.

If you want to make your own butter for this recipe:
 (If you want to try making your own butter as we do here on the farm, choose an organic heavy cream (don't use non organic grocery store cow-milk cream because conventional producers now almost certainly have numerous ingredients besides just cream--but don't take my word for it; check out the label! Shocking! ). We use a basic Kitchen Aid stand-alone mixer. Just dump in your cream and turn to medium speed. It only takes a few minutes to make butter. That's it. Drain off the butter milk (saving for use in another recipe if you like).

Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 cups all purpose whole wheat flour (or altnerative flour if that suits you)
Grated zest of 1 lime
1/2 cup of your shredded dried coconut
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 TBsp cornstarch
1 Tsp baking powder
4 organic eggs
3/4 cup fresh lime juice
Powdered sugar for dusting

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 inch baking dish with aluminum foil. Beat butter and brown sugar until fluffy. Add flour, half of the lime zest, coconut and half of the salt until dough just holds together. Press into pan and prick with fork. Bake until JUST golden, 20-25 minutes. Don't over bake!

In the mixer, combine the granulated sugar, cornstarch, baking powder, asnd remaining lime zest and salt. Add eggs and lime juice. Pour into the crust. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Cool and then refrigerte until set, 2 hours. Cut into bars and dust with powdered sugar and lime zest.

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